posted on Nov, 12 2006 @ 03:43 PM
Originally posted by JFrazier
The F-22 will mostly act as a force multiplier for the US Air Force. During the Cold War it would have been a one to one replacement for the F-15 but
now most are realizing that it can do many jobs effectively that are outside of the F-15's realm. It doesn't just have one mission in the combat
theatre these days.
Well that's where i agree and disagree... The cold war is NOT over despite what the media has to say on the issue and the F-15 should probably be
replaced on a 1 to 1 basis if the US ever wants to be able to defend itself against Russia where hostilities to break out. If all the US wants to do
is fight lesser enemies the F-22 is probably not such a bad idea but i would have focused my efforts not on stealthier airframes but on building up my
SEAD/DEAD capabilities as those are fast fading for the US air force. The US problem lies not in gaining air superiority over enemy air space but in
interdicting their ground forces; which should obviously be the only goal of a air force imo.
Such capabilities are not at all helped by a high altitude super super interceptor.
The numbers arguement could go on forever but there are multitudes of F-16, F/A-18, and later F-35s for the role of the common fighter. The
F-22 alone will not change the tide of a war but it can change how the war is fought in some areas.
The US loses few if any fighters against opposing air forces and building more airplanes dedicated to that role is imo a complete misapplication of
resources and more importantly , emphasis.
They are doing pretty good these days in terms of maintenence. Being brand-new has an upside. I remember someone posting a report about that
but I'd expect the Raptor's turn-around time to be at least as good as the F-15s.
Sounds almost too good to be true and i suspect such claims will turn out that way in practice. I am sure you got that from a reliable source so feel
free to share.
The LM plant in Marietta wouldn't have problems cranking up production in wartime if needed. Don't forget that the Super Hornet, Eagle, and
Viper plants are still open for rapid production.
Would there be a plant and would the special materials it requires be readily available after much of the continental US have been laid waste a
nuclear strike? How widely distributed is the production plants and how unique are the skills and industrial base required for production? Where would
it operate from after all the airfields are gone? High technology weapons are great but imo the operation and upkeep should in most cases be the first
consideration. The F-109 was good once in the air but to get it there and back on the ground cost the Germans as much as 30% of all models built in
airfield and operational or deployment 'accidents'. If you look at what sort of places the Mig-29 and Su-27's varieties can operate from it becomes
obvious what they are still planning for and what they will give up for such capabilities.
Again, the Raptor is a force multiplier sending information from the battlefield to other planes in the area and coordinating
Which can be done much more cheaply without compromising the force structure so badly. I'm just not sure this is the way to go for the worlds premier
conventional air force as it trades strategic flexibility for dominance in pure head on conventional warfare where no one does anything unexpected.
It's never been a strategic weapon though. The project title told that from the start.
All weapons are in the end strategic weapons as all fighting is done towards strategic ends and what compromises strategic considerations should be
excluded automatically. The US air force can stand to lose hundreds of planes and pilots in wars against third world nations ( if those wars were
actually legal and in the interest of the American public no one would balk at such cost but since it's wars for corporate profit where American
soldiers must be kept alive ...... ) but can it afford to have thousands less planes in it's force structure simply to try avoid such losses?
Trading in strategic flexibility so that you may lose less pilots in a strategic scrap against a third world nation is a very bad idea as it assume
you will not have to fight a third world war against the other superpower in the world.
As i said it just seems to me that this is a politicians weapon and not something the US armed forces needs, especially at such cost, to win wars
Hope you find some time to respond...